Webinar: COVID-19 Contact Tracing and the Canadian Constitution


David Lie and Lisa Austin

Date and time:

July 29, 2020 12:00 – 1:30 pm

Contact tracing apps play an important role alongside human tracing in our public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to ensure that contact tracing apps infringe our Constitutional rights as little as possible, however, the apps must be carefully constructed and the information they collect must be safeguarded. In a highly collaborative research paper entitled “Test, Trace, and Isolate: COVID-19 and the Canadian Constitution,” a team of experts from the University of Toronto, York University, and the Ontario Tech University reviewed the benefits and limitations of using contact tracing apps to identify people who have been exposed to COVID-19. 

In this free webinar, the paper’s authors, including Schwartz Reisman Research Leads Lisa Austin and David Lie(pictured), will take part in a moderated group discussion led by Cheryl Milne, executive director of the David Asper Centre for Constitutional Rights at the University of Toronto. The authors—Lie, Austin, Vincent Chiao, Beth Coleman, Andrea Slane, Martha Shaffer, and François Tanguay-Renaud—will discuss their research and conclusions including: the usefulness of contact tracing apps, the privacy choices involved in the technical design of these apps, which app the Ontario government has selected to use and why, and the privacy impacts considered under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which provides a framework for balancing competing rights and interests.

The panelists will be available for questions at the end of the discussion.

This event is co-presented by the Schwartz Reisman Institute for Technology and Society and the David Asper Centre for Constitutional Rights at the University of Toronto.

To register, please visit this page. For any inquiries, email tal.schreier@utoronto.ca.